Loving myself a bit more (self-portraits)

This all started with the Be Your own Beloved class that gave me the chance to focus on self-love (and self-respect), something that I wanted to do it since the year 2013 started. Indeed,  RESPECT has been my word for this year. Now I am determined to follow the journey. 

Please, come with me.

...and suddenly I realized what detachment means {7-2014}

"We all have somebody in our lives who has the uncanny ability to push our buttons. We think it is the other person. Surprise, surprise! The problem doesn't lie in the other person, it lies in us! No one can push our buttons unless the buttons are connected. Detach whatever fear, guilt, shame, or anger we have attached to the issue and people will be unable to push us."

Iyanla Vanzant
rationale of change {3-2014}

...And suddenly, everything is here again:

the fear, the pain, the sorrow;
the anguish, the insecurity and sense of no belonging.

Suddenly, the emotional turmoil comes back anew and all the strategies, learnings and tricks seem to be useless,



One feels that it´s time to start from the very beginning and thinks of not being able to fight the same struggles all over again.

And then, without knowing why, one tries a new approach: one stops resisting and starts to embrace. And everything changes.

I did it:
I stopped running to catch peace. I stood still, turned back and looked at what was chasing me. And I said YES.

Yes, here I am feeling fear, and pain and sorrow;
here I am with my anxiety and my doubts,
here I am feeling that I am falling apart.

read the whole text here
You lack a foot to travel? {02-2014}

Then journey into yourself
And like a mine of rubies
receive the sunbeams print

Out of yourself such a journey
will lead you to your self,
It leads to transformation
of dust into pure gold!

notes to the child I was {12-2013} 

Long ago the inner self was close to the surface and inner wisdom -the kind of wisdom we all have inside- reigned supreme. Life was easier because of the feeling of being part of something bigger and wonderful and somehow divine. But little by little that wisdom (who came from many lives of learning) started to be hidden under layers and layers of fears and the resulting conditionings. It started to be forgotten because the wisdom was too big and the brain too young and inexperienced. And also because in order to be improved, that wisdom must be revisited, recreated, and it must be put to the test.

Without it, life seemed incomprehensible and many of the strategies that were developed in order to survive were hurtful too. Some of them were effective but damaged you deeply and helped to create a fortress where the true self remained captive. This created a sort of dissociated identities: one was outside, one was inside.

As you grow up, this situation prevented you from feeling at ease with yourself but also lead you to look for answers and new options making you evolve till becoming the person you´re (I am) today who has being able to heal the wounds, to achieve dreams and to explore acceptance, respect and love.

I think you would be proud of that person. She is recovering your naivety, your sweetness; she is learning to forgive on your behalf and to vindicate your beauty. Now she knows, what you always knew: she is destined for being happy and developing a soul´s journey.

She has managed to break the wall between inside and outside. Little by little a tiny aperture is appearing, the outer self is going inside and is taking ownership of the internal room, and the inner self is going outside and is learning to be visible. Integration is occurring.

I think you would like to know that. Now you can rest and smile and play, forget the pain and feel finally safe.
discretion versus shame {11-2013} 

There is a very slight border between acting tactfully and feeling unworthy,
between being prudent and feeling a sense of embarrassment,
between modesty and self-censure,
between humbleness and humiliation.

There is a very slight border between need to improve and self-reproach,
between self-restraining and self-disgust,
between being reserved and not being visible.

We can be in one side of the border or the another almost without noticing. The only compass we have which could help us to recognize each territory is to pay attention to our emotions and thoughts. In fact, their nature will indicate us when we head towards self-respect and when we head towards self-disdain.

It´s easy to get wrong and we can mistake one for the another except if we understand the reason of our behavior. We can ask ourselves:  Is it based on love and acceptance or on aversion and disapproval?. Is this a response to my internal wishes or to social speeches?. Am I being proactive or reactive?.  Does it make meexperience anguish or joy?. 

If we listen and start to do what please us we will find out that is much easier than we thought feeling at ease with oneself.

Much easier to look at oneself and say: Hello my beloved, you´re wonderful
the charm of time passing {11-2013}

The world changes. From bad to worse, says the pessimistic (me too, quite often even when I know that this is not exactly true) 

Nothing remains the same. 
We change and get older. From an aesthetic viewpoint this seems to be a sin (not to me, I am sorry) 

What would happen if we stop seeing this as a tragedy?

What would happen if we start to accept changes as the best part of life?

What would happen if we get to understand that this makes our lives -ourselves- much more interesting and valuable?

What would happen if we start to see uncertainty as a enjoyment enhancer?

What would happen if we abandon resistance and embrace what is unsettled and unstable and mutable?

What would happen if we let ourselves to be lead by life itself?

Maybe we would see that we are indeed in a constant process of blooming. Maybe we would see that there is not decadence, there is only a eternal cycle of growing through which we become wiser and nicer

hearts beating together {11-2013}

"When you begin to touch your heart or let your heart be touched, you begin to discover that it's bottomless, that it doesn't have any resolution, that this heart is huge, vast, and limitless. You begin to discover how much warmth and gentleness is there, as well as how much space."

Pema Chodron
I would like kindness to be my legacy {11-2013}

I hadn´t thought about this till I started to be aware of myself and my interconnection to all things. Before I thought that I would love to be remembered as someone inteligent, educated or even intellectual. But now I accept that there is a linkage between all living beings, between all what exists, between all the events, so I think I would love to be remembered as someone who haven´t caused no harm at all.

There is no coincidences, everything is causal, even the things that happen by chance, interdependence really exists, so what I do affects the rest of the world someway or another. No matter if I only can see my impact on those events and persons which are close to me, it is much wider. I think of my impact as a shock wave that can reach people that I don´t even know and have an influence on their lives. 

According to this I try to walk gently in this world. I try not to create negative impact. I try not to trample on things and people. I walk humbly, I still have so much to learn, but I want also to walk without fear or shame (to be visible) in order to support those who can share my vision. And to walk joyfully... being here is such a privilege!.
on the safe side {11-2013}

Our back and our front are our obverse and our reverse and what we choose to show indicates our attitude. 

Here I am, with my back turned to the whole world, facing toward my own path, and not because I am impolite or inconsiderate, but because I need to survive, evolve and emerge and now I know this is the only way I can do such things. 

Here I am, with my back turned to conditionings, other´s criticisms, negative energy, the unfair rules, the polarized thought, the absurd categories, the unjustified pain... and to abuse, and manipulation and lies.

Here I am, facing forward, to the place where the persons who love me know that I´ll dwell, where compassionated support takes place, where confidence can be claimed and wounds mended, where creativity, and faith and joy reinvent themselves every single day.

Here I am…
taking ownership of beauty {10-2013}

I have always known that feeling beautiful is a personal decision. If we accept that we change, social perceptions mutate, the idea of beauty itself is revisited and deconstructed and it´s not an objective reality, we should admit that to feel (or not to feel) beautiful, depends on us. 

Having said that, I have to confess that I am learning to tackle this controversial issue in a different way. I am changing my attitude from criticism and blind consent to crazy standards, to acknowledgement of my own, unique beauty which is not made of inches or pounds but of sudden glimpses of a hidden harmony:

the way the line of my neck joins to my jaw and goes to meet my collar bone, the way my eyes and my eyebrows follow the same direction, the fragile bone of my wrist, the arch in the middle of the upper lip, the soft curve of a shoulder...

And I am learning to feel beautiful by invoking this state of mind, by chasing those glimpses, by seeing this miraculous harmony in me (in us).
shared nap {10-2013}

I am learning to rest more and make less. This is being a great challenge to me because planning things, assuming responsibilities and achieving goals is the way I assess my merits. As I am writing this, I am realizing that maybe it makes you think I have an hectic schedule that doesn´t allow me to enjoy things, undertake relaxing activities or devote time to myself. And that´s not true. Sure enough, I have a busy schedule but I also manage to keep on with my job, my inner work, develop creative tasks, or having quality time with my family and friends. It is a matter of priorities. (...)

But even so, I am learning to rest more and make less.

And rest, in this context, means making room for having unplanned moments, moments where I permit myself to be set adrift, following the pace of the day without duties and even without wishes or dreams, without expectations at all. Just listening what life has to tell me, just observing what comes to meet me, the hidden chances… and what is more important, feeling myself and noticing my body and all the sensorial information that I have been ignoring till now. (...)

So here I am. Learning to rest more and make less. Starting to keep in step with life.

read the whole text following this link
uniqueness  {10-2013}

I thought very much about which words I would write on my skin... there are so many things I would like (I would need) to read as reminders of the life I want to construct and fully live. My mind swung back and forth between many options, but finally I took the marker and wrote down this simple (yet according to my opinion) powerful statement: I am 

Till it came to my mind, I hadn´t thought that this is surely the most significant affirmation I can pronounce. It reminds me the importance of being alive and tells me that life should be always cherished.

It also makes me think (believe) that being myself is enough. No matter if I am strong, curious, fearless, patient you name it (or maybe no), what really matters is that I am... I am a chance for life to reveal itself in an unique way.

If I wouldn´t have existed nothing would be the same because every single part of this universe has a reason for being, including me… including you.

side by side  {10-2013}

"In our bodies, in this moment, there live the seed impulses of the change and spiritual growth we seek, and to awaken them we must bring our awareness into the body, into the here and now."

Pat Ogden
surrendering myself to who I am {10-2013}

After years wishing this or that; following arbitrary rules about how things should be; experiencing disapproval and punishment; being overly self-demanding and judging myself so harshly, I landed in middle-aged territory without a compass and without even a feeling of past splendor, without maps or precedents...  alone, lost, confused but determined to create a new way to look at myself and leave the unease behind. 

I didn´t know how to start. I couldn´t figure out how to create room for a new vision, I was so filled with fixed ideas about almost everything... but somehow along the way I understood that it was all about acceptance.

 And acceptance was not only relinquishment, it mainly meant appreciation.

lonesome but not alone {10-2013}

"Moment after moment, completely devote yourself to listening to your inner voice."

Shunryu Suzuki
body should be a temple, they say... {10-2013}

The place where the soul dwells. You should honor that temple, they said. The place where the sacred shows up. 

But I didn´t feel it to be true. My body was a servant, a vehicle, a container, an obstacle, an executor...sometimes a traitor, rarely a friend, how could it be a temple?

Coming from a society where women depend so much on their husbands and families in so many levels, I only yearned for independence and for getting away the traditional feminine roles. In an age where body cult was so preeminent, I felt far from that ideology. 

Retrospectively, I think that I felt proud of both facts because they allowed me to construct my own identity. But I was not able to find a happy medium regarding to my body. I lived more in my -not always positive- thoughts than connected to my body. My recurrent mental dialogues were essential, and my self-demanding attitude set the rules. 

I lived also in my emotions without knowing it. Indeed emotional responses to feelings experienced along my early years were everywhere. They created unbalance supported by my mind. But my body didn´t count. It was ignored. And I felt invisible, as invisible as my body was to me. 

I kept on hearing all the contradictory messages about it, exposed to all the stereotyped ideas about it. I analyzed many of them as part of my work but I didn´t feel closer to my body even an inch.

However, one day I started to understand:

Body is not a chapel where a bright deity resides. Body is not a sacrificial altar or a place through which I can worship myself. It is not a business card or a tool at the services of other persons. It´s not a clothes rack or a shield, either. 

Body is a way to materialize my essence and somehow, even when I can be much more than it, I am also this body. The more I respect it, the more my essence shines.
smoothly {10-2013}

I used to move stealthily. I wanted to be admired (as anybody else) but somehow I felt ashamed of being myself. 

I used to move rigidly. I wanted to be spontaneous (as anybody else) but somehow I felt afraid of being myself.

I used to move willfully, I wanted to drift around (as anybody else) but somehow I felt not confident about being myself.

It was like I haven´t got the key to my own pace. I fell down so many times, literally speaking… I felt that I was moving awkwardly, that every single movement was affected, artificial and was a response to the person I pretended to be, but didn´t reflect the person I was. 

Layer after layer I have deconstructed the existing framework, I have dismantled it and I have learned a new way to move in this world, connected to my true self.

Mind, body -my always faithful body!- and emotions are now working together, creating together, trying to merge together as one thing, but not to conceal the essence of who I really am: they are allowing me to come into view. And I am starting to slide gracefully along the surface of my life.
in a bird´s eye view {10-2013}

From above things can be a bit different. 
What seemed big, ends up being not so big, What seemed isolated is connected. 
What seemed relevant is fleeting. 
What seemed the whole world is only a little isle. 
And what seemed eternal is already dying. 

From above proud and vanity and fear 

are tiny or not so impressive 
and so, our defects are 
and what we think is imperfect 
and our demands… 
but our light shines even brighter. 

Perspective changes perception,
distance (literal and metaphorically) gives some wisdom 
and favors gratitude: 

I am so thankful today for having a body that allows me to enjoy this experience that we call life, eyes to see and mouth to smile.
what my eyes see {10-2013}

There is beauty in the greys shades, in what is not black or white, in the empty spaces, in the filtered light and in the eclectic frames and odd viewpoints.

There is beauty in the blur, in the undefined lines, in the winding edges, in what is only outlined and in a heart which remains open.

There is beauty in the things that we cannot grasp with our minds, in the mysteries that we don´t know how to apprehend, how to unravel and in the adventure of not knowing what tomorrow will bring.

There is beauty in the lack of expectations about this and that, in letting us be led by life itself, without placing experiences, persons and sentiments inside boxes.

There is beauty in what is not perfect, and defends what is (what is true and unique) and grows away from ideal constructions and stereotypes.

There is beauty in giving up, in detachment, in daring to change our vision, our perspective and the way we move in the world.

There is beauty in baby steps towards joy, in the wild self inside us that says enough is enough! and in the search for authenticity.

There is beauty in saying yes to ourselves and in saying no to those who try to say us how to live.

And there is a beauty in us. An immense, stunning, uncategorized beauty. It takes courage to claim it, but today is the day we are going to start to do it.

Would you follow me?
places from where my true voice comes {10-2013}

"The voice within is what I'm married to. All marriage is a metaphor for that marriage. My lover is the place inside me where an honest yes and no come from. That's my true partner. It's always there.

And to tell you yes when my integrity says no is to divorce that partner."

Byron Katie
profile {10-2013}

believer of miracles who is understanding that beauty can be redefined

lover of everydayness

creator of healing moments

seeker of clarity

authenticity advocate

one who is learning to breathe deeply,

trying to live compassionately

and  really trust the power of creativity and self-knowledge

yearning for having a more contemplative existence

...newcomer to self-love
restless hands {10-2013}

These hands are always busy with their everyday tasks. 

They point out the importance of the message when I am speaking (or teaching) and help me to outline ideas if I have a simple piece of paper.

They paint, chop and sand down, do the dishes, fold the clothes, make collages, hold the camera and are writing these words. They use the eyeliner as well as the screwdriver. They can hide a smile, caress, set a boundary or heal.

They were in my husband´s hands when her mother passed away and rocked my sweet cat Malú in her last day. And with palms pressed at my center, I prayed.

They dream of being gardener´s hands, potter´s hands, restorer´s hands, missionary´s hands.

They are untiring but lately they are learning how to stop and go with me along this contemplative journey. They are learning to hold myself with love.
I am starting {10-2013}

to retrace what I walked,
to unlearn what I learnt, 

to forget what I was determined to remember,
to regain what I lost,
to overcome what marked me,
to understand what has no explanation,
to welcome what before I found awkward,
to forgive what I thought I would never forgive,
to honor what I have lived.

I am starting to untangle what has been knotted with much tenderness, just to go back to myself:

the place that I shouldn´t have left
connections {09-2013}

Back from our photo-walk we went through a stony path. Tiny shells were lying on the land, here and there, shining like remains of all the things we have loved and we have let go, of the shields we have worn and we are learning to abandon. 

My nephew bowed down and took a photo. I held two of them and took another.

Our gaze bumped into the same tiny shells but each of us told different stories: a single thread, distant visions, the same intentions.

They don´t solve the old mystery of how we capture reality, why we recreate it some way or another, but now -one month later- I have realized that they illustrate the new kind of memories that we are creating together. Memories of our souls journeys.

They prove that we are healing together, not only ourselves, but also the energy blockages in our family.

see his photo following this link
Resting in light {09-2013}

Observing the horizon 

I realize that I don´t know what is beyond that straight line,
more water, I guess 

and another land where maybe I could be being another person, 
living another life. 

But I am not curious to know
this or that, I don´t ask myself polite (or angry) requests. 

Just gazing at the sky
fills me with wonder.

Because I am not beyond that line, 
in another place, 
being another person;  
because I am here, 
in this place, 
being myself. 


more following this link
I am right here {09-2013}

Open spaces

Open heart

Open arms 

Open eyes 

My mind feels released 

My soul flies gaining heights without any concern 

playing with the wind while goes back to the day when everything started 

when the journey commenced 

and shows me the master plan that has led me here 

to the inner place where acceptance dwells 

where bliss is chasing me 

where I realize that nothing has to be mended and I can fully embrace my life 

where I feel that I can be the person I am
My dearest Zena {08-2013}

The winter will arrive and the schedule will be hectic once again. The time will be short. There will be new meetings and deadlines, the old same duties and responsibilities, the same rewarding sense when the job is done. You will wonder once again why you are always taking on seemingly impossible tasks, why you cannot be focused on a few things only. 

Maybe you will be tempted to punish yourself for being the person you are. Don´t do it. Remember that pond of light where you were seated, remember the tranquility of that morning of August, remember how things seemed to fit perfectly. Remember how you felt reconciled with life, with yourself. Remember that you have the power of being centered. Remember that you can be any single thing you want to be, everything, nothing... it is up to you. And whatever the decisions you will take, it will be ok. 

 Much Love. Z.
When lack of expectations is a form of braveness {08-2013}

I still am on the way, I still become concerned by the same old obsessions from time to time but I am learning that I can be brave enough to cultivate acceptance, I can even accept being obsessive and self-demanding. 

Brave enough to try new things without fear to fail, to ask for help when need it (!), or to permit myself not to do it.
The future {08-2013}

Looking through that window, while hearing the click of the camera behind me, I realized that I could keep doing that (exploring life and myself through the camera) my whole life. 

Indeed, my hope is to continue to do this but always with a compassionate and lovingly gaze.

Always with an amazed,

authentic, honest,

passionate and peaceful gaze.

Always with a grateful,

insightful, playful,

humble and respectful gaze.

Always with a free and balanced gaze.

Always with a soft and very light gaze. 
I´ve prayed {08-2013}

I´ve prayed for being as kind to me as I try to be to others. For learning to treat myself lovingly. For letting go the harsh self-criticism, the feeling that I was not good enough. I´ve prayed for appreciating the magic in me, my uniqueness not as an stigma but as a gift. And the day came when my prayers were listened, answered, and I felt a tiny dash of self-love within my doubtful heart. 

I will be feeding that little dash till it becomes a great bonfire that will make my heart feel the warmth of confidence. Even when today I am not able to praise my photos (myself) publically, believe me, I am proud of myself. And deep inside me a tiny voice is saying right now: you are beautiful, you are wise, you are marvelous...
Flagging joy messages to myself {08-2013}

I´d been so much time moaning 


feeling sorry for myself...

analyzing why I´d had to go through harsh experiences

wondering the reason why abuse exists

and lack of compassion

and manipulation.

The reason why it seems I didn´t deserve support


an ounce of love.

But one day I understood that I could have my share of inexplicable


and undeserved pain

but this wouldn´t prevent me from being delighted to live.

Today I rejoice in my life

I praise my days

and alone, at home, I make this little dancing to mark this happy revelation...

this simple moment.
Fear not {08-2013}

I wear masks. I try to do it consciously. 

They can be dangerous, they can be useful. They can be made thinner through mindfulness.

The older I get, the more I understand that they are made of the same material than my true self.

The more I look at them, the more I understand that I am all the things that my masks suggest -but not as much as I pretend- and also, all the things that my masks usually hide.

All of them are determined not to show my spiritual side...

maybe because by definition it invokes true,

maybe because it is perceived as a threat.

However, I feel that when I connect with the sense that I am part of something that goes beyond what we see, I am unmasked.

I feel that I am fiercely being myself.
This is me being myself {08-2013}

Today I want to honor: 

the way I see the world, the way I let it unfolds in front of my eyes without disapproving it, trying not to judge it

my determination to live in the present moment and let go my need to control life

my amazement and gratitude

my ability to stay connected and to search for guidance

the clarity I am achieving step by step

my yearn for serenity

my story and my present

the person I was and the person that I am starting to be
Without demanding perfection {08-2013}

Wandering about a window catches my eye. 

It´s only a simple window,

it has nothing very special...

just a white curtain

or maybe it´s just the angle of the light

but suddenly the miracle happens:

I see only its beauty

I discover my reflection, I am the beholder and the observed subject.

It´s only me... the same person that I was yesterday and the day before yesterday

it has nothing very special...

just a kind gaze

or maybe it´s just the angle of the light

but suddenly the miracle happens:

I see only my beauty
Sweet state of being {08-2013}

"When you take the effort to focus your drifting consciousness to become fully awake to the present moment, you will discover the glorious light that dwells within you." 

Denise Linn
Stray wisdom {08-2013}

Sometimes my feet know what my mind ignores and lead me to places where the answer to my thoughts and prayers is awaiting in the form of a visual treat, or a song, or a sudden smile. This triggers little epiphanies, new sequences of connections that defy logic, but paradoxically make sense and often, make me awaken to a kinder mood . I guess that my inner being (who seems to have a rationality of its own) manages to inform me about the right direction when I am unwilling to listen. 

One day that I was totally overwhelmed by working and family issues, they led me to a shop that was selling this signal. Now it "lives" with me. Time has proved it to be true.
Flirty I am not {08-2013}

I feel vulnerable and exposed 

when I try to behave or act that premeditated way.

I feel awkward (even with my own camera).

I love distance

and mystery

and detours

and words

and get lost in the complexity

and eccentric musings

and unexpected ramblings

and stories

and laugh

and sharpness

... or maybe, I simply flirt my own way
Yearning for the pause mode {08-2013}

I am a restless person. I am always doing something, trying to achieve something, trying to understand something. 

I always feel challenged to do a bit more, only a bit more, only a bit better. And this "little bit" consumes my time without any mercy.

I am not running away, I just feel that time is short, and my goals and dreams are many. But from time to time I experience a sort of nostalgia. I wish I could do nothing, expect nothing, search for nothing, think nothing, achieve nothing except time to stop.
There are subtle threads {08-2013}

that tie me to every single thing 

that has been created 

"Contemplation is the keen awareness of the interdependence of all things" 

Thomas Merton
Deep inside me... {08-2013}

there is a tiny space 

a little place where clarity reigns

from where light emanates

a place that radiates calm

and wisdom

and beauty

and truth

It´s far and near

It´s a place where the entire universe resides

which is within me and also within you.

I´ve had to get acquainted with that place

I´ve had to explore, fit out and defend it,

I´ve had to occupy it

and only then,

only then,

life has started to make sense to me.

Today I vindicate

and honor that place
This is the place where I belong {08-2013}

Volcanic rocks, hard light 

aridity, loneliness, bare beauty

lack of ornaments...

just the vast sea of lava. 

Here and there a green spot reminds how the life reveals itself in other places 

but not here, not here.

Life here is made of salt, wind and sand

no trees, no big mountains, no rivers

no shades...

just a merciless sun

ridges and curves

and, far away, the ocean.

After a quarter of century or more 

I am walking here again:

the wind blows

and the sun is setting (...)

more following this link
When light is all around {08-2013}

Mom didn´t want me to take this photo 

She thinks she is not beautiful enough

I am too old, she says, while washing hands

But beauty comes in all forms or at least so I believe

People says you were a beautiful lady, I said

but I can´t disagree more

You´re still beautiful

No, I have lost so many things, she said

but I have peace in my heart

That´s why you´re beautiful, I said

and she looked at herself in the mirror

I´ve hesitated much to share this photo and the previous words, because they illustrate an intimate moment between me and my mom, that was lived without intention to be published. But they reveal so very well the truth of that day (indeed, the truth of my current relationship with my mom) that finally I decided to share it. I think is time to celebrate this new stage of wisdom, serenity, acceptance, joy and tenderness, that are giving a new sense to the love links that tie us together.

My mom will be 89 years old next November (and I´ll be 49 next December). She is right, we have lost so many things along the years, time has flown!, you know. But I truly believe we have won more than we have lost. That´s why I am celebrating!. That´s why this is the truth of my life now.
Leap of faith {08-2013}

After all these years that I´ve been so extremely aware of the risks of visibility 

after all these years having my feet on the ground

after all these years being predictable

and overly responsible

today I am ready to trust myself

my own process

I am ready to rely on me

to abandon fortifications

to jump to new actions

which will embody my intentions,

the learnt lessons

my dreams...

after all these years of prudence

I am ready for a leap in the dark

a quantum leap

and finally follow my bliss
Me and myself: {08-2013}

Facets, dimensions, levels 

masks, aspects, faces

archetypes, stereotypes, roles

shadows, sub-personalities

obverse and reverse

coherent contradictions

contradictory coherence

earth and air



... a thousand of lives are not enough in order to explore the territory of self
A simple letter can save your life {08-2013}

Dear inner critic: I am not going to search for your ideal perfection anymore. It´s a deception. 

From now on, I am only going to see miracles around me

and inside me.

I am going to experience amazement.

I am going to let go preconceived ideas about beauty,

about life, about myself.

I am determined to cultivate gratitude,

I am going to accept what is, not to regret or reject it.

I am going to live.

I am going to celebrate my gifts and talents,

I don´t want to fight anymore against myself.

I want to play and laugh and love,

I want to trust my life.

I want to improve myself by embracing the power of what I really am.

If you can help me to do this with much love, stay...

If not, set me free.

I am sorry, it´s not you, it´s me.

Kind Regards, Z.
The moment when I am with myself {08-2013}

without being in a hurry 

without feeling unease

without no expectations about

my appearance

the way I should act

the place where I should be

the things I should be doing

because finally I know that

there is not a nicer moment than this sacred moment

there is not a better place than this precious place where I am right now

there is not a greater thing than paying attention to what is happening right here
There must be a happy medium {08-2013}


Pleasing others and selfishness 
Extreme need of excellence and inefficiency 
Rigidness about one´s beliefs and lack of opinion 
Focusing on achievement and giving up one´s dreams and goals 

Endless self-criticism and blindness 

Constancy and lack of willpower 
Tolerance to frustration and indolence 
Impatience and apathy 
Obsessive concerns and carelessness 
Need of approval and arrogance 
Improvement of oneself through self-knowledge and looking always outside 
Self-demanding attitude and self-indulgence 
Motivation and the loss of hope (...)

more following this link
My hands show me the world that my soul sees {08-2013}

These are my hands 

one holds the brush

one holds the camera

They know how to create what my mind imagines

what my heart yearns for

the vision of my soul

they paint, write, sand down...

they go across the geography of things.

they caress the anatomy of life

and connect me with the essence of the present moment through the right side of my brain

they are diligent,


and beautiful
The charm of shabby perfection {08-2013}

I am a kind person. Yes, I am. 

But I am not always kind to myself. No I am not.

I am trying to improve. But sometimes I realize that I am being unkind to myself because I am not kind enough to myself.

Does this make any sense?. I don´t think so.

This vicious circle must be broken...

with love

with compassion

with forgiveness
Why don´t dream of it all? (playing with reveries) 

I want to be serious and responsible 

I want to be playful and have not a care in this world 

I want to be a Zen monk and master the art of meditation 
I want to walk by the red carpet (at least once) 

I want to travel abroad and be part of an humanitarian project 

I want to stay at home and read all day long 

I want to have a garden and make grow my own vegetables 
I want to live in a city and to plant herbs in pots 

I want to fly to the Antarctic and get lost there 

I want to fly to the isle where I was born and living with my mom forever 

I want to teach every day of my life 
I want to own a little library or a tea shop 

I want to go to Tahiti 

I want to live in Italy for a year (...) 

  more following this link
Lost in the presence of all things {08-2013}

Beauty, colors. forms, lines, visual quality of everyday life nourish me.

And also tradition, details, delicacy.
Textures. Tact.
Healthy routines. kindness.
Memories. Authenticity.

back to self-portraits {08-2013}

"Do not let your fire go out, spark by irreplaceable spark, in the hopeless swamps of the approximate, the not-quite, the not-yet, the not-at-all. Do not let the hero in your soul perish, in lonely frustration for the life you deserved, but have never been able to reach. Check your road and the nature of your battle. The world you desired can be won. It exists, it is real, it is possible, it is yours"

Ayn Rand


Unknown said...

Zena, this a beautiful page and well done with it. Well done with publishing your mum photo. She is still beautiful and I can see it. Gorgeous lady! it takse courage to create page like this one but also it is an act of self love. fantastic and deeply, deeply inspiring page, great portraits. Thank you for it!

Unknown said...

Wow! An amazing and courageous study...of YOU! Glad you shared the spotlight with your beautiful mother.


Unknown said...

photo with shells on your hand is amazingly beautiful.

Unknown said...

'memories that we are creating together' how beautiful is that, this probably when magic happens in those particular moments. Thank you for sharing your wisdom and thoughts. They do help to heal

Ginnie said...

O.M.G. My dearest Zena. This is beyond incredibly beautiful! Brava to you for going through with this exercise of self-love!

Anonymous said...

Such a wonderful series of self-portraits and inside aimed reflections, I'm impressed by your journey Zena.

Jeanne said...

What a beautiful and amazing self portrait series this is. I just love it. Also love the shot of your mother and her inner beauty which shines through her wrinkles. All of these are so special, and how healing it must be to frame and capture all of these photos showing who you are. I love it!

Anonymous said...

you are.................... beautiful

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